Durham dream-pop duo Beauty World is classically trained cellist Leah Gibson (who long played with Bowerbirds and Lost in the Trees) and Duncan Webster, cofounder of Hammer No More the Fingers. Their tunes are upbeat, fueled by forceful harmonies that swell and swoon. Beauty World’s self-titled 2015 release celebrates their collaborative strengths. Webster’s rhythm drives songs through the unexpected shifts of Gibson’s classical influence, which creates layered, meandering avenues for that movement. During the ominously charming “Rambutan,” for instance, a plucky piano dances atop moody strings as Webster sings, “Be still my friend/let me shoot an apple off your head.” Playful lyrics paired with punchy percussion and sumptuous melodies, delivered by a pair with such palpable chemistry, will leave your head bobbing and your heart full.
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